Maternal health, antenatal and at 8 weeks after delivery, in home versus in-hospital fetal monitoring in high-risk pregnancies

W. M. Monincx, E. Birnie, H. A. Zondervan, O. P. Bleker, G. J. Bonsel

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To assess maternal health outcome, comparing high-risk pregnant women to either domiciliary monitoring or in-hospital monitoring, and a low risk pregnant group. Paper and pencil questionnaire, distributed antenatal and 8 weeks after the delivery. A university hospital. Three groups: 130 high-risk pregnant women, who entered a randomized clinical trial and were allocated to either home (n=69) or in-hospital monitoring (n=61), and a reference cohort of low risk pregnant women (n=55). Antenatal physical and mental health (RAND36) and social experiences; mode of delivery; complications postpartum; physical health, mental health, and social experiences at 8 weeks postpartum. In all groups, antenatal physical health was considerably lower compared to the physical health of US women aged 18--44 years. Antenatal mental health was lower in high-risk women than in low-risk women (P <0.05). Antenatal maternal health, the mode of delivery, and maternal complications postpartum did not differ significantly between in-hospital and domiciliary monitored women. Eight weeks after delivery, physical health improved considerably in all groups; mental health was significantly lower in high-risks as compared to low-risk women (P <0.01). The allocated monitoring strategy showed a significant effect on mental health at 8 weeks after delivery; the mental health score being lower in the domiciliary monitored group (P <0.05). At 8 weeks after the delivery, physical health improves substantially in all groups. Mental health is higher in low-risks than in high-risks. Within the high-risk group domiciliary and in-hospital monitored women have the same physical maternal outcome at 8 weeks after delivery. However, mental maternal health in in-hospital monitored women at 8 weeks was probably biased by a medicalization effect
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-204
JournalEuropean journal of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2001

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